Thursday, July 24, 2014

No Words Or Title Can Accurately Describe This

By Isaac Miller 

Isaac contemplates his next move while the truck is loaded.
Today we worked at the bakery until about eleven, went home to change, then went out to lunch for Serge’s birthday. But the best part of the day was the four hours that followed, as we drove in a very tightly packed coaster bus (a bus capable of holding 23 people rather than our normal 17) to a refugee camp near Lake Kivu. 

At first on the drive we saw all the things we’ve seen this week when we’ve driven around Kigali. The very square, colorful, concrete shops and homes, the people walking place to place on the sidewalks and the moto-taxi’s that dart in and out of traffic. The scenery that came after all of that was what took the cake today. The rolling hills, the nature, the perfectly randomly placed houses on the edges of cliffs - they all just really encompassed the beauty that you can find in Rwanda.  And let me just say that there is a reason Rwanda is called the Land of a Thousand Hills. 

The day was cloudy and slightly foggy so the hills upon hills in the distance looked like any painting of a Chinese landscape you see an elementary school child bring home. Each hill getting smaller and a darker bluish grey as they go further back. 

About half way through the ride, we stopped so that the people who needed it could have their necessary nature pee’s, while the rest of us walked onto a two way bridge about thirty or forty feet above a river. It was a great opportunity for photos that you could actually take while standing still (instead of nested of on a bus driving down bumpy winding roads). 

If you looked down next to the river you saw a field where a group of maybe ten Rwandan kids were sprinting bare footed up the hill to come meet us at the end of the bridge. Me, Doug, Serge, Ryan, and Kyle were the first ones over and they immediately waved but were very shy. Serge translated for us but the only english they seemed to know was how to tell us their ages. We said goodbye and left. After a little more driving we saw the first finger of Lake Kivu. We drove up to our guest house which looks over the lake on all three sides. No matter where you look it’s just a breathtaking view. I’m looking forward to the next few days here at the house and the time we spend at the refugee camp will be just as amazing. 


  1. My heart leapt when I realized the author of today's post is my son. (My son, the writer. I like the sound of that.)

    This word picture of the landscape really helps me understand where you are. It's difficult to digest how a culture surrounded by so much beauty could have endured the tragedy of genocide. That's hard to reconcile from here ... and I'm sure it's even more difficult when you are in the midst of it all.

    Thank you so much for these posts. These stories make a difference. So do the people telling them.

  2. Great descriptions, Isaac. I totally painted that hill painting in preschool, what an evocative way to describe what you were seeing. I look forward to hearing more about the time you spend at the refugee camp. Keep writing!

  3. Isaac - what a great experience for you and the group there ... and what an awesome job of describing the setting you are experiencing. It is like I was there when I was reading it - nice job. Hope you continue to have a great time and a memorable experience. Look forward to hearing more about it in future blogs and even more when you return.
    Uncle Kent

  4. Isaac We have been following your adventures on the internet It sounds like you are having a great time and doing a lot of great things with the kids there. I'm sure you will have lots of stories to tell when you get home. We will look forward to hearing all about them. Take care and enjoy your stay. Tell all we enjoy reading their stories also.
    Love, Grandpa and Grandma Miller